Tag Archives: Poetry book review

Blog Tour – Behind Closed Doors, a Collection of Unusual Poems by Robbie Cheadle

It’s my pleasure to have Robbie Cheadle on my blog today to celebrate her new release.

Dear friends, please join me to welcome Robbie and her new book Behind Closed Doors, a Collection of Unusual Poems.

I’ll let Robbie tell you about her book cover, the title, and the different aspects of the poems. Here’s Robbie:

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The cover of a book and its title are both important selling points.

The cover needs to be eye catching, suit the genre, and hit at what the book is about. My previous poetry book is called Open a New Door, a phrase taken from the song Open a New Window from the musical production of Mame starring Angela Ladsbury and Beatrice Arthur.

I first listened to my mom’s record of Mame when I was a little girl of five. My mom had numerous records most of which were Broadway musicals, but Mame was always my favourite. I loved this song the best. It is rejection of the run-of-the-mill ordinary life and a quest for something new and exciting.

I wanted to retain the doors concept for my second poetry book, Behind Closed Doors, even though it had a different focus. The poems in this new book look at the various parts of my life and what effectively goes on behind those doors that are closed to social media and the world.

The poems are collected into the categories of In the Boardroom, In death, In my mind, In relationships, In lockdown, and In nature. I wanted a cover that would complement the idea of the many doors into people’s lives and souls so when I saw this cover of multiple multi-coloured doors designed by Teagan R Geneviene, I knew this was the one.

The doors in many different colours suited my own personal idea that the doors in peoples live come in different shares. Some are the yellow, pinks, and oranges of joy, the reds of love, the blues and greens of comfort and coolness, and the purples of sadness and depression.

What are your thoughts about the importance of covers? Tell me in the comments.

Thank you, Robbie!

Now, here is the book information

Book Blurb

What goes on behind closed doors: in the boardroom, after death, in the home, during lockdown, and in nature? This collection of poems, ranging from rhyming verse to twisted nursery rhymes, captures the emotions and thoughts people hide behind the masks they present to the world.

                                                                                          What thoughts are hidden

                                                                                          Behind her immobile face

                                                                                             Quite expressionless

                                                                                           Eyes cold and indifferent

                                                                                          Scrutinising me – hawk like

This book includes some of Robbie Cheadle’s spectacular fondant art and cakes.

My Review

I’ve read Robbie Cheadle’s first poetry book Open a New Door and loved it. I knew I would enjoy reading Behind Closed Door. I’ve also read Cheadle’s children’s books, a young adult fictionalized biography about her mother’s life, and her historical fiction. She is a prolific writer while maintaining her demanding full-time job and home-schooling of the two teenage boys during the pandemic.

Behind Closed Doors is a poetry collection with themes about the author’s complex emotions and thoughts on her cooperated world, her personal dreams, her family life as a daughter, wife, and mother, as well as her thoughts on the lockdown during the pandemic.

Robbie is a qualified Chartered Accountant and specializes in corporate finance. The poem “Climbing Cooperated Ladder” vividly portraits the harsh reality of the cooperated world. Many individuals give up their family and social life to meet the never-ending demands with no guarantee of success:

 “Sit in your office, juggling ideas and possibilities, while your friends watch movies, eat out, drink, and socialize, spending their weekends having a jolly good time.”

“There are no friendships in the corporate jungle Colleagues left to demise in this uncaring world.”

It reminds me of the headache, heartache, and disappointment during my ten years in administration.

I could relate to the poem “He Walks Away” that describes the mother’s joy, pride, and pain:

“She watched over him tenderly as he learned about life… her smile healed all wounds; her kiss cured all pain…

“It’s heart-wrenching to let go knowing he must… encounter setbacks and loss before success… but it’s the duty of a mother to set her son loose to fly alone.”

Cheadle’s poems about lockdown remind us how vulnerable life is. “One day I had freedom, the next, it was gone. How will this end? I find myself wondering, Will we take a big step backward in time fifty years or more?”

Cheadle’s Behind Closed Doors is a delightful hour-long short read, but the provoking thought will stay for a long time. I highly recommend this book to poetry lovers and non-fiction readers.

Ratings  Amazon Goodreads

Purchase Links

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B09BBR94NC

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Behind-Closed-Doors-Robbie-Cheadle/dp/B099C8R3T4

About Robbie Cheadle

Robbie Cheadle is a South African children’s author and poet with 9 children’s books and 1 poetry book.

The 7 Sir Chocolate children’s picture books, co-authored by Robbie and Michael Cheadle, are written in sweet, short rhymes which are easy for young children to follow and are illustrated with pictures of delicious cakes and cake decorations. Each book also includes simple recipes or biscuit art directions which children can make under adult supervision.

Robbie has also published 2 books for older children which incorporate recipes that are relevant to the storylines.

Robbie has 2 adult novels in the paranormal historical and supernatural fantasy genres published under the name Roberta Eaton Cheadle. She also has short stories in the horror and paranormal genre and poems included in several anthologies.

Robbie writes a monthly series for https://writingtoberead.com called Growing Bookworms. This series discusses different topics relating to the benefits of reading to children.

Robbie has a blog, https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/ where she shares book reviews, recipes, author interviews, and poetry.

Robbie Cheadle’s social media

Website: https://www.robbiecheadle.co.za

Blog: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ?ref_=dbs_p_ebk_r00_abau_000000

TSL Books Author Page: https://tslbooks.uk/robbie-cheadle

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15584446.Robbie_Cheadle

Twitter: https://twitter.com/bakeandwrite

Treasuring Poetry: Meet poet and author Miriam Hurdle

I’m over at Writing to Be Read with Robbie Cheadle interviewing me for her “Treasuring Poetry” post. I had fun talking about my favorite poems. Please head over to visit and let us know what you think.

Writing to be Read

Today, I am delighted to host poet and author Miriam Hurdle for the July edition of Treasuring Poetry.

Welcome Miriam Hurdle

Hi Robbie,

I’m delighted to be your guest on Writing to be Read to talk about poetry.

Which of your own poems is your favourite

Among the published poems in Songs of Heartstrings: Poems of Gratitude and Beatitude, several poems are my favorites in equal measure for different reasons. One is in the section of Songs of Marriage, one in Songs of Tribute, and one in Songs of Inspiration.

The time I wrote this post, my heart turns to the poem “Healthy Grieving” in the section of Songs of Tribute.

Healthy Grieving

Randy and my husband were true friends.

No appointment needed for

a barbeque, a movie or a game, just

knocked on each other’s door.

The conversation could go anywhere,

no worry about apologies.

When one needed…

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National Poetry Month – Songs of Heartstrings by Miriam Hurdle #BookReview @mhurdle112

I’m over at Carla’s blog of Carla Loves to Read. She read my poetry collection and posted a wonderful review. Carla and I have teaching and school administration in common. She is a retired elementary school principal/teacher/teacher-librarian. She blogs about book reviews, reading challenges, adults’ and children’s books, and a lot more. Please head over to read her post and browse around her beautiful blog with different features.

Carla Loves To Read

I took several weeks to enjoy this book of poems. I enjoyed them and wanted time to ponder them, not rush through them. Miriam Hurdle is a blogger I follow who shares wonderful photographs, poetry and snapshots into her life among other things. I enjoy her blog and wanted to read her book. I was not disappointed.

Songs of Heartstrings byMiriam Hurdle

Published October 31st 2018 by KDP

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Magical Whispers by Balroop Singh – A Book Review

April is National Poetry Month. It is my pleasure to review Magical Whispers by Balroop Singh, a talented fellow poet.

Magical Whispers: Poetry by [Balroop Singh]

Blurb

I wait for whispers; they regale my muse. Whispers that can be heard by our heart, whispers that ride on the breeze to dispel darkness and ignite hope. I’m sure you would hear them through these poems if you read slowly.
‘Magical Whispers’ would transport you to an island of serenity; beseech you to tread softly on the velvety carpet of nature to feel the ethereal beauty around you. The jigsaw of life would melt and merge as you dive into the warmth of words.

In this book, my poems focus on the whispers of Mother Nature, whispers that are subtle but speak louder than words and breathe a quiet message.
Each day reminds us
It’s the symphony of surroundings
That whispers life into us.

My Review

Magical Whispers is an aesthetic poetry collection. Ms. Singh weaves the softest whispers of her words into dreamy tranquility. The poems in the first section Magical Whispers reflect on the nature that evokes the heart, the mind, and the senses. Many poems have the subject of water such as the lake, the waves, the pool, the stream, and the waterfalls that convey a soothing sensation. The poems in the second section Whispers of Life reflect on the self, the love, the heartache, the hopes, dreams, fears, and the memories. Ms. Singh submerges herself in nature and sees the beauty beyond appearance. She ponders upon the hidden treasures and finds hope in the puzzle of life. The poems are inspiring to many poetry lovers.

My favorite two stanzas in “Dwindling Pool”are:

When did the magic fade?

Did it vanish with the pool fairy?

Or apathy and human avarice

Devour its exquisite grandeur?

Depleted oasis ebbing away

Reflections gather to ponder

 Confabulations grow grim

Shimmer of sun waning at the horizon

My favorite stanza in “An Escape” is:

She woke up with a fright

Shuddered at the light

That filtered through the leaves

Offering a velvety delight.

My Amazon and Goodreads Rating: 5.0 out of 5 stars

An image posted by the author.

About Balroop Singh

Balroop Singh, an educationalist, a poet and an author always had a passion for writing. She would jot down her reflections on a piece of paper and forget about them till each drawer of her home started overflowing with poetic reminders, popping out at will! The world of her imagination has a queer connection with realism. She could envision the images of her own poetry while teaching the poems. Her dreams saw the light of the day when she published her first poetry book: ‘Sublime Shadows Of Life.’ She has always lived through her heart. She is a great nature lover; she loves to watch birds flying home. The sunsets allure her with their varied hues that they lend to the sky. She can spend endless hours listening to the rustling of leaves and the sound of waterfalls. She lives in San Ramon California.

Website: http://balroop2013.wordpress.com

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Balroop-Singh/e/B00N5QLW8U/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7340810.Balroop_Singh

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BalroopShado

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/balroop.singh1

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Songs of Heartstrings by Miriam Hurdle on A Better World of Books #bookreviews #poetrybooks

Today I am featured on Alethea Kehas’s blog – A Better World of Books. She wrote a heartwarming article about Songs of Heartstrings: Poems of Gratitude and Beatitude. I invite you to head over to her blog to read and leave a comment! ♪♫ ♥♫♪

Alethea Kehas features interviews of authors and reviews of their books. She extends the invitation to the authors as followed:

“Are you an author with a vision for a better world? Do you have a published book of poetry, fiction, or nonfiction that uplifts and empowers readers to create a more positive inner and outer environment? If so, I’d love to hear more about it. On a “Better World of Books,” I interview authors and review books of all genres that offer a vision for a better world. If you think your work is a part of this vision, please contact Alethea.”

The Light Behind the Story

front-cover4I have the honor of featuring Miriam Hurdle’s Songs of Heartstrings: Poems of Gratitude and Beautitudeon A Better World of BooksThe collection was chosen as the solo “Medalist Winner” in the Poetry category of the 2019 New Apple Summer eBook Awards. It has also received much praise from its extensive readership.

Although I have never met Miriam, I have followed some of her posts through the world of blogging and had heard of, but had yet to read, her poetry collection. After I downloaded the Kindle version of Songs of Heartstrings, I  hardly put it down. As I read it, in basically one sitting, I felt a deep feeling of kinship and empathy grow within me through the author’s words and images. 55f8192d3ef2a593c5d56cb0286e1655

The reader soon learns Miriam has endured her share of life challenges, which include divorce, estrangement (and later reunion) with her daughter, and surviving cancer…

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Miriam’s Book Review of “Open a New Door” by Robbie Cheadle and Kim Blades

The Author’s Words

Open a New Door is a poetic peep into the lives of the poets, Kim Blades and Robbie Cheadle, both of whom live in South Africa.

The book is divided into four categories: God bless Africa, God bless my family and friends, God bless me and God bless corporate and work. Each part is sub-divided into the good, the bad and the ugly of the two poets’ experiences, presented in rhyming verse, free-style,haiku and tanka, in each of these categories and include colorful depictions of their thoughts and emotions.

The purpose of this book of poetry is encapsulated in the following tanka and haiku poems:
What drives me to write?
To share my innermost thoughts
The answer is clear
It’s my personal attempt
To make some sense of this world.


Inspiration blossoms
Like the unfurling petals
Of the Desert Rose

My Recommendation

Open a New Door by Robbie Cheadle and Kim Blades is a poetry collection with themes on the nature and life in Africa, the poets’ families and friends,their personal lives and the cooperate world. In each theme, the poets explored the good, the bad and the ugly. At the end of each poem, a short narrative gave the background or situation under which the poems were written. The poems are modern, free verse with rhymes and no rhymes. Each poem is easy to read in the length or one or two pages.

In the theme of life in Africa, Robbie Cheadle showed her compassion toward the poverty of African people young and old whose bread of the day depended on the begging, and their hope of life seemed to fade. Kim Blades described her mother raised her in a rural mountain village and learned to appreciate the nature,and concluded that the Love of Nature leads to the Love of Man. Among the cat family, I like Cheetah the best, I could visualize in Kim’s poems reflecting on the Cheetah’s running. The honey-badger, like most of the animals, protected the meal reminded of many nature documentary videos I’ve watched.

In the theme of the poets’ families, Robbie shared her joy of having a son with an amazing mind and her worry about another son’s physical disease; whereas Kim depicted her delightful interaction with her son. As a parent, I could relate the joyous and anxious emotions. 

In the theme of personal life, I appreciated Kim’s honesty expressing her emotion about her husband leaving her and her loneliness. Robbie’s poem “My Mind’s Eye” beautifully depicted the way she saw her life from childhood to adulthood and her acceptance of what life has brought her.

This poetry collection covers a wide range of personal experiences, observation and emotions. Many people could relate to them.

My Goodreads Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars



About the Author

Robbie Cheadle was born in London in the United Kingdom. Her father died when she was three months old and her mother immigrated to South Africa with her tiny baby girl. Robbie has lived in Johannesburg, George and Cape Town in South Africa and attended fourteen different schools. This gave her lots of opportunities to meet new people and learn lots of social skills as she was frequently “the new girl”. 

Robbie is a qualified Chartered Accountant and specializes in corporate finance with a specific interest in listed entities and stock markets. Robbie has written a number of publications on listing equities and debt instruments in Africa and foreign direct investment into Africa.

Robbie is married to Terence Cheadle and they have two lovely boys, Gregory and Michael. Michael (aged 11) is the co-author of the Sir Chocolate series of books and attends school in Johannesburg.Gregory (aged 14) is an avid reader and assists Robbie and Michael with filming and editing their YouTube videos and editing their books.

Contact Robbie Cheadle at:

Website: https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Robbie-Cheadle/e/B01N9J62GQ?ref=dbs_p_ebk_r00_abau_000000

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15584446.Robbie_Cheadle

Twitter: https://twitter.com/bakeandwrite

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/robbie.cheadle.7